Wednesday 19 December 2012


I often like to see how other artists work, but I forget that some might want to see how I work too! So here's the WIP of my latest painting. When John Howe announced that December's theme on his forums would be the Hobbit (obviously) I recalled one of the first themes about nine years ago and thought it would indeed be nice to re-visit that book. Plus it's a nice way to get in the mood for the movie. I've seen the movie in the mean time, but this was started before I did.

Of course everything starts with some sketches:

Sketched from a stuffed Eagle

using photos, and some imagination when it comes to dwarves (but that's another story)
The preparatory sketch was turning into a full illustration, I might finish that too

I've been making some textured backgrounds, slapping layers of thin acrylics on sheets of 50 x 70 cm paper, it's fun and it's a good base for various things. Plus it's also useful for digital texturing... but I forgot to scan that one before using it here.

I outlined the subject and started to paint in layers of light blue to isolate the sky.

Then I used my crayons to draw the main outlines, the crayons are fairly thick but since the idea isn't to be too realistic it's fine.

That's the one I used for outlines and shadows.

 Working in the colours. At that stage I decided that the structure at the bottom looked like mountains so I worked with that.

 The finished interior. The border is prepped with white acrylics. And a detail of the texture:

Pencilling in the border, this was done with colour pencils, it's a bit too fine for the neocolor crayons. I use tracing paper to reproduce the motif as many times as I need.

The final piece:

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